CFP National Championship 2021: Great, Good, Decent

Introduction

Okay, let’s do this. Bama/Clemson for the CFP National Championship 2021 for the third (fourth? fifth? I’ve lost count) time in a row. Wait, what’s that you say? It’s not? Color me truly surprised. I honestly thought part of living in this hell was the torture of the same CFP final game for the rest of eternity.

I don’t know how the Buckeyes broke the curse, but I’m thankful they did.

As a casual fan of college football, I willingly accepted the Alabama/Nick Saban “evil empire” story. I hated the team. That was all BT (Before Tua). I legitimately jumped out of my seat on the couch and cheered Tua’s debut in the National Championship game that year. I bought his story hook, line, and sinker. Before he left for the NFL, he was my college football man crush. Unfortunately, he has a lot of competition in the pros, so while I still like him, he needs to get in line. And, get a lot better to even come close to Mahomes.

I cheered for Alabama last year mostly to spite my friend Craig. We’re both kind of a-holes and we do that kind of stuff on a regular basis. In fact, I planned on going over to his house at some point during bowl season (and then again tonight) to watch some college football. He is a much more devoted fan than me and it can be fun to watch games with him in spite of the fact that we do things out of spite towards one another. I decided against going over. I could have just watched the first half, but it’s a late night for a school night. What, then, will I be watching in the CFP National Championship 2021 by myself?

The Great

That’s the same red as the royal troopers in Star Wars, isn’t it?

Evil Empire is back – With Tua gone to the NFL and his brother taking his talents to the Terrapins, I have no reason left to root for this team. I could take the counter culture route and cheer for Nick Saban and his douche bag act. Unlike Belichick, I actually find Saban to be somewhat charming. But, that means that I’d have to cast my lot with a team that had 3 out of the 5 finalists for the Heismann trophy. That goes against my very being as a sports fan.

Justin Fields – I heard the kid’s name through the season, but never saw him play until the semi finals against Clemson. He took a brutal hit and I thought for a minute that he might be dead. Nope, he only came back out to throw 6 TDs against one of the best teams in the history of college football. I’ll be interested to see what he can do against Alabama.

The Good

Covid Bowl – Regular readers of the page may know that I’m a fan of chaos, especially when that chaos is confined to the ultimately pointless arena of sports. Thanks to COVID, chaos has ruled this college football season. Several teams with losing records played and won bowl games. The two potential “spoilers” this year both put an end to any talk of them as actual contenders by taking a dump in their bowl games. Some of that chaos is present in this game. If Ohio State wins, they will have won a National Championship playing only 8 games, the fewest since the 40s. I think that’s what I heard. Bring that on.

No fans – I mean, there will be fans. But, it will be the COVID version of fans in the stands. In a stadium that holds over 65,000, there will be maybe a quarter of that actually in attendance. Some have lamented the fact that there are no fans in the stands. Honestly, other than the weird Zoom fans that the NBA had in the bubble, I haven’t noticed the crowd in any of these events. When they show the stands, it looks weird. Other than that, though, the fans are superfluous to the process.

The Decent

No Halftime Show? – This is how you know I’m an old guy. I mean, forget that most of my references are from Seinfeld, The Simpsons, and 80s and 90s SNL. Or, that my top ten games are all from the Super Nintendo or before. Maybe, also forget that I groan when I sit down, need to take an extra 10-15 minutes to get out of bed in the morning, and that my doctor mistakenly gave me a prostate exam before remarking, “Oh, you’re not 50 yet.” So, yeah, I guess I was pretty unhealthy a few years ago. No, the way that I know I’m an old guy is that I actually felt sad when I just searched an found out there would be no halftime show.

More of the same – I hope for a good game out of Ohio State. Who knows? Maybe Justin Fields can take them on his shoulders again for the win. It will be tough with his injury. So, I fear that eventually Alabama’s talent will take over and they’ll roll.

The Verdict

The CFP National Championship 2021 comes with quite a bit less fanfare than previous years. COVID has just made everything not as fun this year. I will still watch the game. And, I will try to enjoy it. But, I just have a feeling that I will tune out in disgust or boredom at halftime. Hopefully, by next year, things will be approaching pre-COVID normal.

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